Performers at the 2024 Portland Old-Time Music Gathering

Hubby Jenkins ★ Foghorn Stringband ★ Double File ★ Laurel Bliss ★ Hi Steppin’ Country Western Dance Band  ★ Les Coeurs Criminels ★ Sonya Badigian & The Buffalo Pals  ★ Forty Drop Few ★ Caroline Oakley & Maggie Lind ★ The Horsenecks ★ Lori Prime & Ken Torke ★ Richard Melling & Karen McCracken ★ Caleb Klauder & Reeb Willms Country Band  Jane Palmieri ★ Dan Fish & Sarah Ells Fish ★ Brooks Masten ★ Marian Macrae Herrmann ★ Arlo Leach ★ Paul Silveria ★ Alex MacLeod ★ Amy Hofer ★ Kelsey Nelsen ★ Instrument Luthiers

hubby jenkins

Saturday Concert and Workshop

foghorn stringband

Saturday Concert / Sunday at the Moon

Hubby Jenkins is a talented multi-instrumentalist who endeavors to share his love and knowledge of old-time American music. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he has delved into his southern roots, following the thread of African American history that wove itself through America’s traditional music forms. As an integral member of the Carolina Chocolate Drops and later Rhiannon Giddens band, Hubby has performed at festivals and venues around the world, earning himself both Grammy and Americana award nominations.

-Blues banjo workshop at Alberta Abbey: Saturday, Jan. 13 at 2:30 pm
-Concert at Alberta Abbey: Saturday, Jan. 13 at 7:00 pm

The Foghorn Stringband is the present day gold standard for real-deal hard-hitting genuine old-time American string band music, with eight albums, thousands of shows, and over 15 years of touring under their belts. The Foghorn Stringband includes Caleb Klauder (vocals, mandolin, fiddle), Reeb Willms (vocals, guitar), Nadine Landry (vocals, upright bass) and Stephen “Sammy” Lind (vocals, fiddle, banjo).

-Workshops at Alberta Abbey: Saturday, Jan. 13
-Concert at Alberta Abbey: Saturday, Jan. 13 at 7:00 pm

double file

Friday Square Dance

laurel Bliss

Saturday Guitar and Vocal Workshops

Double File includes multi-instrumentalists Sophie and Isaac Enloe, and Maggie and Patrick Lind.

Band for square dance on Friday, Jan. 12 at 8:30 pm at the Alberta Abbey

Bellingham, Washington vocalist and dobro player Laurel Bliss was exposed early in her life to the music of the Carter Family, the Louvin Brothers and the Stanley Brothers. That exposure has inspired a lifelong dedication to unearthing and learning vocal chestnuts. Laurel has a composed, straightforward yet tender approach to singing. She currently plays fiddle and guitar with The Happy Valley Sluggers, a Cajun and old-time band from Bellingham.

Guitar Workshop, Intro to Maybelle Carter Fingerpicking Style: Saturday, Jan. 13 at 4:15 pm at the Alberta Abbey

sonya badigian and the buffalo pals

Friday Square Dance

Forty Drop Few

Friday Bar Band

The Buffalo Pals (Sonya Badigian, CPN Hollywell and Elliot Kennedy), much like a sturdily built log cabin nestled in the heart of musical craftsmanship, construct melodies with the robust integrity of weathered timber. Their harmonies, akin to the interlocking logs of a well-built cabin, create a warm, cozy atmosphere that resonates with the timeless echoes of Americana while simultaneously creating a sonic rebellion that’s as infectious as any punk anthem. In each note, the trio fortifies the musical structure, compelling listeners to take refuge in the enduring chaotic charm of their soundscapes. They invite the audience to slam dance through the rich tapestry of their renegade tunes.

Band for square dance on Friday, Jan. 12 at 9:30 pm at the Alberta Abbey

Forty Drop Few is a trio that plays pre-War stringband, hillbilly, country blues and jazz tunes, as well as originals. The trio consists of Candra Edwards, Ethan Francis and Elliot Kennedy, all on a variety of different instruments. They’ll have you stompin’ and hollerin’ to their infectious brand of music.

Bar band at the Alberta Abbey on Friday, Jan. 12 at 6:00 pm

caroline oakley & maggie lind

Saturday Kids Show / Callers for Friday Square Dance

paul silveria

Saturday Family Dance / Calling Workshop / Crankie Show

Caroline Oakley is a musician and dance calling machine who has been teaching and calling old-time community square dances for over a decade. She enjoys fiddling, playing guitar, singing old country songs, growing vegetables, sewing, fermenting things, dancing and numerous other forms of physical activity. Caroline is a music educator in Corbett, Oregon, teaching music to young families through Music Together and community square dancing in local schools.

Maggie Lind is a square dance caller, old-time musician and music educator who teaches children and adults and is a founding member of the popular Portland Stringband Class.

Together, Caroline and Maggie have years of experience entertaining audiences young and old and will put on a delightful show for the kids.

-Callers for square dance on Friday, Jan. 12 at 7:30 pm at the Alberta Abbey
-Kids show on Saturday Jan. 13 at 2:00 pm at the Alberta Abbey

Paul Silveria is a unique performer with a varied skill set. You can find him calling square dances, leading jams, teaching banjo, sharing his “crankies” and performing both traditional tunes and original songs. As a community-based artist, Paul loves telling stories, sharing skills, and bringing people together. Originally from Portland, Oregon, and now living in Vancouver, British Columbia, Paul has been an active part of the West Coast traditional music community since 2002.

-Family Square Dance Caller on Saturday, Jan. 13 at 3:00 pm at the Alberta Abbey
-Square Dance Calling Workshop on Saturday, Jan. 13 at 4:15 pm at the Alberta Abbey
-Crankie Show on Saturday, Jan. 13 at 5:30 p.m. at the Alberta Abbey 

the horsenecks

Friday Square Dance

kelsey nelsen

Saturday Crankie Show / Caller for Friday Square Dance

The Horsenecks play hard-hitting and heartfelt old-time and early bluegrass stringband music. They are made up of Gabrielle Macrae of Portland, Oregon on fiddle, Barry Southern of Liverpool, England on Banjo, and the legendary Portland rhythm section of Kevin Sandri and Brian Bagdonas on guitar and bass.

Square dance on Friday, Jan. 12 at 7:30 pm at the Alberta Abbey

Kelsey Nelsen is an artist, square dance caller and musician who lives in the Olympic Peninsula of Washington State. She organizes square dances and other events in her area, calls square dances, plays with her Cajun band and makes beautiful Crankies. She created the beautiful paper cut poster for the 2016 Gathering. -Caller for square dance on Saturday, Jan. 13 at 7:30 pm at the Alberta Abbey -Crankie Show on Saturday, Jan. 13 at 5:30 pm at the Alberta Abbey 

arlo leach

Saturday Jug Band Jam

brooks masten

Sunday Cabaret

Arlo Leach heads up the monthly Portland Jug Band Jam and plays in several jug bands. He plays guitar, banjo, mandolin and fiddle and won the jug playing contest at the 2012 Jugapalooza. He has taken an interest in researching pre-War blues musicians, especially those that seem underrated relative to their contributions and has organized gravestone benefit projects for Will Shade, Joe and Charlie McCoy and Charlie Burse, and is helping with a similar project for Earl McDonald.  

Host for jug band jam on Saturday, Jan. 13 at 4:00 pm at the Alberta Abbey

Brooks Masten makes amazing banjos, and he plays them as well. As he has the past few years, he’ll be serving as the genial host of our big Sunday Cabaret (Jan. 14 at 1:00 pm at the Spare Room Restaurant and Lounge). His ever-changing array of flamboyant costumes should not be missed!

lori prime & Ken Torke

Wednesday Jam

marian macrae herrmann

Saturday Kids Jam

Lori and Ken love old time tunes and know a bunch of them. Come join them to play some of your favorites and maybe pick up a few new gems!

Hosts for jam on Wednesday, Jan. 10 at 7:00 pm at the Moon and Sixpence

Originally from Portland, Marian Macrae Herrmann is currently residing in Salem, Oregon, where she is a musician and music educator. An exceptional old-time fiddler and a member of the Macrae Sisters Band, she has taught children for many years and is delighted to lead the kids jam at the Gathering.

Host of Kids Jam on Saturday, Jan. 13 at 12:00 pm at the Alberta Abbey

sarah ells fish & dan fish

Saturday Instrument Petting Zoo

karen mccracken & richard melling

Saturday Sing-Along

Dan and Sarah will host the Instrument Petting Zoo again this year, on Saturday, Jan. 13 from 12:00 to 1:30 pm in the back of the basement ballroom at the Alberta Abbey. The Petting Zoo gives young children a chance to play around with instruments down on their level.

Karen McCracken and Richard Melling draw from the old-time, bluegrass and early country traditions, singing close harmonies and playing multiple instruments. Together, they have a genuine old-time duet sound.

Hosts of Sing-Along on Saturday, Jan. 13 at 1:45 pm at the Alberta Abbey

portland sacred harp

Saturday Shape-Note Singing Session

jane palmieri

Caller for Friday Square Dance

Shape-note singing is a uniquely American tradition that brings communities together to sing four-part hymns and anthems. It is a proudly inclusive and democratic part of our shared cultural heritage. Participants at Portland Sacred Harp singing sessions are not concerned with re-creating or re-enacting historical events. Our tradition is a living, breathing, ongoing practice passed directly to us by generations of singers, many gone on before and many still living. All participants are welcome, including beginners and newcomers, with no musical experience or religious affiliation required.

Hosts for shape-note singing on Saturday, Jan. 13 at noon at the Alberta Abbey

Jane Palmieri is a Portland caller who has a special fondness for collecting and calling gender-free dances or outright changing dance calls to fit her queer agenda. She has called for the Portland Square Dances, and at community events, fundraisers, hoedowns, and weddings in the Pacific Northwest.

Caller for square dance on Friday, Jan. 12 at 7:30 pm at the Alberta Abbey

alex macleod

Caller for Friday Square Dance

hi steppin' country western dance band

Thursday Cajun/Honky Tonk Show

Alex MacLeod is a Seattle musician and square dance caller.

Caller for square dance on on Friday Jan. 12 at 7:30 pm at the Alberta Abbey

Hi Steppin’ is made up of seasoned players from various traditions who come together and play their favorite dance tunes from catalogs of the greats: Bob Wills, Hank Snow, Rose Maddox & even some Merle. Put on yer dancin’ shoes! The band includes Fred Coates (vocals and acoustic guitar), Kate O’Brien (vocals and fiddle), Larry Ullman (vocals and bass), Rusty Blake (pedal steel), and Don Lawry (drums).

Band for Cajun/Honky Tonk Kickoff Show on Thursday, Jan. 11 at 7:30 pm at Mississippi Pizza


Steph Noll

Caller for Friday Square Dance

Andy grummon

Caller for Friday Square Dance

Steph Noll called her first dance around 2007 in the parking lot of Liberty Hall during a workshop given by Bill Martin. Since then she has enjoyed picking up dances from fabulous West Coast callers (and occasionally from a visiting Easterner). She has yet to not feel total delight at the sight of a hall full of grinning, dancing people. Playing music with friends and singing and dancing with her young kids are among her deepest joys, and she’s thrilled that her boys have taken an interest in old time music and square dancing.

Caller for square dance on on Friday Jan. 12 at 7:30 pm at the Alberta Abbey

Andy is a banjo player and square dance caller living in Portland. The highlight of their square dance career was calling a gender inclusive dance at the Q Center in 2019. Andy’s goal is to create a supportive and fun dance environment in the service of bringing the joys of square dance to those who may have been traumatized by middle school gym class.

Caller for square dance on Friday, Jan. 12 at 7:30 pm at the Alberta Abbey

caleb klauder & reeb willms country band

Thursday Cajun/Honky Tonk Show

Amy hofer

Caller for Friday Square Dance

One of the great things about Caleb Klauder and Reeb Willms is that they immerse you in the sheer joy of classic country music until all other cares of life fade away. These two originally hail from Washington state, Caleb from the coastal islands and Reeb from the high desert plateau of central Washington. They have come together in music and are two of the most compelling musicians making country roots music in America today. They carry the torch of their music around the world touring as a duo or backed by their cosmic honky tonk band, as well as with the Foghorn Stringband.

In addition to Caleb and Reeb, the Country Band lineup includes Patrick Lind, Ned Folkerth, Russ Blake and Annie Staninec.

Band for Cajun/Honky Tonk Kickoff Show on Thursday, Jan. 11 at 7:30 pm at Mississippi Pizza

Amy is a seasoned square dance caller, musician and organizer. She has helped put on Dare to be Square in multiple cities, taught string band classes in Berkeley and Portland, and has helped organize Portland’s Every Sunday Square Dance, the Portland Old Time Music Gathering, Centrum’s Festival of American Fiddle Tunes, and the Berkeley Old Time Music Convention.

Caller for square dance on Friday, Jan. 12 at 7:30 pm at the Alberta Abbey

Instrument luthiers

Friday and Saturday at Alberta Abbey

Les coeurs criminels cajun band

Thursday Cajun/Honky Tonk Show

The Gathering is excited to once again be offering space to professional instrument builders and repair experts at the Alberta Abbey on Friday and Saturday. Come visit them to learn the artistry of instrument making and to maybe find your next fiddle!

About the luthiers on site:

Jacob Mitas is a bow maker, violin technician, fiddler and owner of Mitas Bows, located in Northeast Portland.

Jamie Herrmann is Laila, Dillon and Olive’s dad and he also happens to work as a violin maker and restorer. He grew up surrounded by traditional American fiddle music. His work has been found in the hands of players such as old time fiddler Bruce Greene and Doug “The Ragin’ Cajun” Kershaw, and his instruments have been on the stage of the Grand Ole Opry and beyond. He enjoys being a resident luthier at the Festival of American Fiddle Tunes.

The Criminels are: Paul Denison, Joanne Pontrello, Davee Bolt, Peter Freeman, Marit Olivia, Chris Miller and Kelsey Nelsen.

Band for Cajun/Honky Tonk Kickoff Show on Thursday, Jan. 11 at 7:30 pm at Mississippi Pizza.